Class of 2021

We were again unable to host our annual Commencement Reception and Diploma Ceremony this year, so we want to show our appreciation to all of our 2021 graduates by recognizing their achievements at Brown on our website.  The Department conferred thirteen undergraduate degrees and three graduate degress in May 2020. 

Please join us in saying Congratulations to the Classics Department Class of 2021!


Bachelor Degree Recipients 

Johanna Appleton, A.B. Latin; A.B. BiologyAppleton, Johanna (sq)_0_0_0.jpg
Home: Massachusetts, USA

I am originally from Mattapoisett, Massachusetts, but went to high school in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. At Brown, I studied Classics (Latin) and Biology. Outside of class, I did research on maternal mental health and volunteered at the Rhode Island Free Clinic. After graduation, I am going to start work at a neuroimaging lab in Texas Medical Center.



Juan (Jack) Antonio Briano, A.B. Classics; NeuroscienceBriano, Jack (sq)_0.jpg
Home: New York, USA

Sigma Xi (2021)
Hassenfeld Summer Scholar (2020)
Completed an Honors Thesis in Neuroscience (2021)
Sigma Xi Associate Membership Nomination (2021)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
Brown University Sailing Team (2017-2019)
Technology House Member (2018-2021)
BCJ Contributor (volumes 30 and 32)
Undergraduate Research Assistant in the Morrow Lab (2019-2021)
Rhode Island Free Clinic Volunteer (2020-2021)

Jack came to Brown with the intention of pursuing a premedical track, while also pursuing his love of classics. He did both throughout his four years here, and will be graduating with a double concentration in Classics and Neuroscience. He greatly enjoyed both learning classical history and reading a diverse set of classical authors, but has developed a special appreciation for lyric poets such as Horace and Fortunatus. He has also enjoyed reading the works of classical playwrights, especially Plautus and Aristophanes. In addition to Latin, Jack also used his time at Brown to learn Ancient Greek, and took introductory Sumerian in his final semester. Outside of the classroom, Jack researched autism-linked genetic disorders in the Morrow lab, volunteered at the Rhode Island Free Clinic, is a member of Technology House, and is a former member of the Brown sailing team. After graduating, he will be moving to New York City to research the gut-brain axis in Parkinson's disease at Weill Cornell before applying to medical schools.


Justin Chiang, A.B. Greek & Latin; Applied MathematicsChiang, Justin (sq)_0.jpg
Home: New York, USA
Thesis: The Science of Lucretius

Phi Beta Kappa (2020)
Lyon Thesis Prize (2021)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
Brown Sailing Team (2017-2021)
Brown Sports Analytics Club (2017-2019)

While Justin's Classics journey did begin before Brown, he spent four wonderful years here interacting with and learning from the Classics department, now graduating from the Latin and Greek track. He will also be graduating with a degree in Applied Math and as a member of the varsity sailing team. While he has enjoyed most works he has read over the years here, if he had to choose, he would pick Lucretius and Xenophon as his favorite Latin and Greek authors. In fact, he liked Lucretius so much he took the time to write a whole honors thesis on him, giving an analysis of the science in Lucretius's work. While his post-grad plans may not directly include Classics, he hopes that the organizational, analytical, and writing skills he has honed in the department over the past four years will be put to great use going forward, and of course he will keep his books around to revisit in his down time!


Kelly Clark, A.B. Classics; Computational Biology
Home: New Jersey, USA
Thesis: Sound in the Carmina of Venantius Fortunatus and Alcuin of York


Abigail Creighton, A.B. LatinCreighton, Abi (sq)_0.png
Home: Massachusetts, USA
Thesis: Love Hurts: Depictions of Violence in 1st Century BCE Latin Love Poetry

The Maureen O'Donnell Scholarship for Academic Excellence (2017-2021)
The James Aldrich Pirce Prize (2021)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
TAPS Technical Assistant (2017-2018)
Queer Alliance Executive Board Member (2017-2020)
CLPS Research Assistant (2018-2021)

Abi is a Classics (Latin) concentrator. Outside of Classics, she spent her time at Brown completing linguistics research and participating in theater and dance. In the fall, she is entering the MAT program in Latin and Classical Humanities at UMass Amherst. She hopes to become a high school Latin teacher and inspire the same love of Latin in her students which her Latin teachers have inspired in her.


Benjamin Fink, A.B. Classics; Economics, Magna Cum Laude
Home: New York, USA

Omicron Delta Epsilon (2021)
Phi Beta Kappa (2021)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
TAMID Consulting & Investing President (2017-2021)
Club Baseball Team Member (2017-2021)

Benjamin is a dual concentrator in Classics and Economics. Within Classics, he particularly enjoyed learning about Greek history, mythology, and ancient authors with Professors Oliver, Kidd, and Cherry, and he also loved studying Latin literature, especially Horace’s Odes with Professor Reed. Upon graduation, Benjamin will begin his career as an Investment Banking Analyst in New York City.


Hannah Grosserichter, A.B. Greek; HistoryGrosserichter, Hannah (sq)_0.jpg
Home: Germany

A double concentrator in Classics and History, Hannah enjoys reading Greek drama and learning new languages. She has been the president of the French House and a Meiklejohn peer advisor for two years, and in her free time, she loves to bake for her friends.




Kaleb David Hood, A.B. Classics; East Asian StudiesHood, Kaleb (sq)_0.jpg
Home: South Carolina, USA

1st Place President Francis Wayland Prize in Latin (2018)
1st Place President Francis Wayland Prize in Greek (2018)
Princeton in Beijing Intensive Language Program (2019)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
BCJ (2017-2021; Editor 2017-2019; Editor in Chief 2019-2021)
DUG leader (2018-2021)
Writing Fellow (2019-2021)

During my time in the Classics Department, I have studied both Greek and Latin. Learning these two languages was very difficult, but it came with the reward of interacting with original, ancient texts in ways I never imagined I’d be able to. Outside of the classroom, I spent four years working with the Brown Classical Journal – two of which as an Editor in Chief – and three years as a DUG leader. The friends and community I’ve made during my time in this department will stick with me for years to come.


Annabelle Diana Hutchinson, A.B. Classics; EconomicsHutchinson, Annabelle (sq)_0.png
Home: Maryland, USA

Extra-Curricular Activities:
Brown University Varsity Sailing Team (2017-2021; commodore 2019-2020, captain 2020-2021)
Brown Socially Responsible Investment Fund (2017-2021)
Brown Classical Journal (contributor, 2019-2020)
Brown Undergraduate Law Review (contributor, 2020)
Intercollegiate Finance Journal (contributor, 2020)
Brown Political Review (staff writer, 2020-2021)
Brown Journal of Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (Economics Director, 2020-2021)

Annabelle Hutchinson is from Annapolis, MD where she was the valedictorian of St. Mary’s High School. She double concentrated in Classics and Economics at Brown. Annabelle was a four-year member of the Brown Varsity Sailing Team. Her team won the 2019 Women’s National Championship, and she served as team captain during her senior year. She has particularly enjoyed writing for various publications on campus, including the Brown Political Review, Brown Undergraduate Law Review, and the Brown Classical Journal. After graduation, Annabelle will work as an investment banker at J.P. Morgan in New York City. She is grateful to her family and the Brown Classics Department for all their support!


Zoë Mermelstein, A.B. Latin; HistoryMermelstein, Zoë (sq)_0_0.jpg
Home: New York, USA

Phi Beta Kappa (2021)
President Francis Wayland 1st Place Prize in Greek (2018)
Arthur Liman Public Interest Fellow (2020)
Christian Yegen Thesis Prize (2021)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
Brown Political Review (Staff Writer, 2017-2019; Editor, 2019)
Brown Refugee Youth Tutoring & Enrichment (2018)
BCJ contributor and editor (2018-2019)
Brown College Democrats (President, 2019-20)
College Democrats of Rhode Island (Political Director, 2019-20; President 2020-21)

Zoë is a double concentrator in Classics (Latin track) and History. Outside of class, Zoë was President of College Democrats of Rhode Island. Next year, she will move to DC to become a Protection Counselor at the UNHCR, before eventually attending law school in the future. Besides the chance to delve into Greek and Latin literature, Zoë is incredibly grateful for the vibrant student community and the incredible mentorship she was able to receive from many professors within the Classics Department.


Eli Shea, A.B. Classics; Computer ScienceShea, Eli (sq)_0.jpg
Home: Rhode Island, USA

Extra-Curricular Activities:
Brown Poker Club (2017-2021)

I am a member of Brown class of 2021.5', studying classics and computer science. My experience with Latin in high school led me to take an epic poetry course my first semester, and it was then that I decided to concentrate in classics. This summer I will be a quant trading intern for IMC Trading in Chicago, and am looking forward to both enjoying and completing my final semester next fall.


Miranda Clare Triedman, A.B. Classics; BiologyTriedman, Miranda (sq)_0.jpg
Home: New York, USA

Sigma Xi (2021)

Extra-Curricular Activities:
Brown Elementary Afterschool Mentoring (BEAM) Program (2017-2018)
Clinica Esperanza Volunteer (2018-2020)
Biology DUG Leader (2019-2021)
Matched Advising Program for Sophomores (2019-2021)
Rhode Island Hospital Research Assistant Intern (2019-2021)
Undergraduate Researcher at the Kantor Lab (2020-2021)

I am from New York City and concentrated in Classics and Biology on the pre-med track. In the Classics department, I have particularly enjoyed studying Latin love elegy and authors from late antiquity. Outside of classes, I have worked on cystic fibrosis clinical research at Rhode Island Hospital and HIV research in the Kantor Lab. I am staying in Providence after graduation and working as a clinical research assistant at Rhode Island Hospital.


Abby Wells, A.B. Greek & SanskritWells, Abby (sq)_0.png
Home: Texas, USA
Thesis: देव and θέος: A Comparative Analysis of Divine Narratives in the Hindu Purāṇas and the Homeric Hymns

Undergraduate Prize for Excellence in Library Research, 2020

Extra-Curricular Activities:
DUG leader (2019-2021)
Editor, Brown Classical Journal (2017-2019)
Editor-in-Chief, Brown Classical Journal (2019-2021)

Abby concentrated in Classics on the Greek and Sanskrit track. During her years in Classics, she thoroughly enjoyed reading texts in ancient Greek and Sanskrit, as well as Latin, and learning to speak Modern Greek. She also served as an editor, then Editor-in-Chief for the Brown Classical Journal as well as a DUG leader. 


Noah Moshe Wells, A.B. LatinWells, Noah (sq)_0.jpg
Home: Florida, USA

Noah Moshe Wells became a classics concentrator almost solely due to Darrel Janzen's enthusiasm as an instructor in Latin 100. Noah is grateful for all the support and patience he has received from the classics department faculty during his time at Brown. He hopes that the philological skills he has cultivated studying classics will help him to learn Aramaic and Yiddish at yeshiva in Jerusalem this summer.





Doctoral Degree Recipients 

Stephany “Stevie” Hull, Ph.D., Classics
Home: Pennsylvania, USA
Dissertation: Education in the Cosmos: Augustine’s Platonic Curriculum of Philosophy and Rhetoric
Dissertation Advisor: Joe Pucci

Stevie’s academic research focuses on the fields of ancient education, late antiquity, and natural philosophy. Her dissertation, entitled “Education in the Cosmos: Augustine’s Platonic Curriculum of Philosophy and Rhetoric” integrates these three areas of interest. In her work as an instructor and TA at Brown, she has been particularly interested in incorporating writing pedagogy into her classes, both because she sees writing education is an issue of equity and because she believes a strong foundation in writing and communication will serve her students in the range of diverse endeavors they pursue.


Avichai Natanel Kapach, Ph.D., ClassicsKapach, Avi (sq)_0.jpg
Home: Rhode Island, USA
Dissertation: Contradiction and Truth in Euripides: A Study of the Trojan Women, Helen, and Orestes
Dissertation Advisor: Johanna Hanink

Other Activities:
“The Art of Mythical History and the Temporality of the Athenian Epitaphioi Logoi,” Trends in Classics 12.2 (2020): 312–40

“Schrödinger’s Alcestis: A Narratological Reading of the Ending of Euripides’ Alcestis,” Ambiguity and Narratology: Interdisciplinary and Diachronic Workshop, University of Tübingen, 24 April 2021 (virtual) “The Dioscuri between Time and Eternity,” Classical Association of New England 115th Annual Meeting, 20 March 2021 (virtual) “Heracles’ Inheritance and Other Paradoxes: Aristophanes on Euripides and the Anthropomorphism of the Gods,” in Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religions Panel on “Laughing with the Gods: Religion in Greek and Roman Satire, Comedy, Epigram, and other Comedic Genres,” Society for Classical Studies 152nd Annual Meeting, 8 January 2021 (virtual)
“Sailing to Troy: Allusion and the Pluralism of the Past in Homeric Epic,” Exeter Works in Progress Seminar, University of Exeter, 9 October 2020 (virtual)
“The Solitude of Anna Soror: Intertextuality and National Identity in Silius Italicus’ Punica 8.1–231,” in “Themes of Isolation in, and in the Study of the Ancient World,” Universities in Wales Institute of Classics and Ancient History, 20 November 2020 (virtual)
“The Palinodes of Euripides: Inconsistency and Self-Contradiction in Greek Tragedy,” Classics Graduate Symposium, Brown University, Providence, 26 September 2019
“Déjà vu and False Phantoms: Politics and Intertextuality in Ovid’s Myth of Anna Perenna (Fasti 3.543–656),” Classics Graduate Symposium, Brown University, Providence, 8 May 2019

Mentor, International Graduate Student Mentorship Program, Brown University (2021)
Facilitator, Center for Language Study Open Hours Program, Brown University (2021)
Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan Committee, Department of Classics, Brown University (2021)
Volunteer, Society for Classical Studies 152nd Annual Meeting (2021)
Proctor, Office of the Vice President of Research, Brown University (2020)

Avi was born in Brooklyn, NY to Israeli parents. He grew up in New York and Providence, Rhode Island. After graduating from the Maimonides School in 2012 he studied Classics at Cornell University. Following the completion of his undergraduate degree (summa cum laude) in 2016, he went on to pursue his Classics PhD at Brown. His dissertation explores the intersection of contradiction, myth, and truth in the plays of Euripides.


Kelly Nguyen, Ph.D., Ancient HistoryNguyen, Kelly (sq)_0.jpg
Home: Born in Vietnam, raised in California, USA
Dissertation: Vercingetorix in Vietnam: Classical Inheritance and Vietnamese Ambivalence
Dissertation Advisor: Johanna Hanink

Cogut Institute for the Humanities Graduate Fellowship, Brown University (2020) Pre-doctoral Award (best paper at a major conference), Women’s Classical Caucus (2020)
Paper: “Ocean Vuong’s Reception of Telemachus and Odysseus” 
The Erich S. Gruen Prize (best graduate paper on multiculturalism in the ancient Mediterranean), Society for Classical Studies (2020)
Paper: “What’s in a Natio: Negotiating Ethnic Identity in the Roman World” 
Professional Equity Award, Women’s Classical Caucus (2021)
Awarded to the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus (served as co-founder and mentorship coordinator 2019-present)
Deans’ Faculty Fellowship 2021-2022, Brown University (declined) (2021)
University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship (2021-2022), University of California - Berkeley (2021)
IDEAL Provostial Fellowship for Studies in Race and Ethnicity (2021-2024), Stanford University (2021)

Other Activities: 
Chair of the Board of Directors, Center for Southeast Asians (nonprofit in Providence, RI) (2017-present)
Cofounder & Mentorship Coordinator of the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus (2019-present)

Kelly Nguyen graduated with honors and highest distinction from Stanford University in 2012 with a B.A. in Classics and Archaeology and she is the first woman to graduate from the Ancient History program in the Department of Classics at Brown University. Her interdisciplinary research engages classical studies in a comparative manner to explore imperialism, forced displacement and race and ethnicity. Her dissertation is the first major study to examine the history of Greco-Roman classical reception within Vietnamese contexts.

This past academic year, she was a graduate fellow at the Cogut Institute for the Humanities. In 2020, she became the inaugural recipient of the Society for Classical Studies’ Erich S. Gruen Prize for best graduate paper on multiculturalism in the ancient Mediterranean, as well as the 2020-2021 winner of the Women’s Classical Caucus’ Pre-Doctoral Award for best graduate paper presented at a major conference. She is a Co-Founder and Mentorship Coordinator of the Asian and Asian American Classical Caucus, a professional organization that received the 2020-2021 Professional Equity Award by the Women’s Classical Caucus.

In the summer of 2021, she will join the Department of Rhetoric at the University of California, Berkeley as a University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow. In the fall of 2021, she will join the Department of Classics at Stanford University as an inaugural Provostial Fellow for Studies in Race and Ethnicity.